COVINGTON, Ga. – Accused killer James Gary Hill was back in a Newton County courtroom Thursday afternoon as his attorney argued that statements he made to an investigator from the Newton County Sheriff’s Office while in the Walton County Jail should be suppressed.
Hill was arrested earlier this year and charged with the murder of 27-year-old Kelly Marshall. Marshall’s body was found under the Mount Tabor Road bridge next to the Yellow River Aug. 12, 2017 by deputies responding to a suspicious call. Hill was jailed in Walton County Aug. 13 for traffic violations and fleeing and eluding charges after running from deputies there.
At the Newton County Judicial Center Thursday, Hill’s attorney, Anthony Carter of the Alcovy Judicial Circuit Public Defender’s Office, told Judge Horace Johnson that Hill’s statements to NCSO Investigator Brent Morrison Aug. 15 should be suppressed because Hill was incoherent and coming off a drug binge during questioning.
Morrison said Hill was advised of his Miranda Rights and signed a Miranda waiver before questioning. He said that Hill was coherent and answered questions.
Hill, who had been in jail two days at the time of the questioning, testified that he didn’t recall the interview.
“I don’t recall anything,” he said.
Hill testified that he had been charged with bringing drugs into the jail. He said he did not recall signing the Miranda waiver.
“I know not to talk to the police without my attorney present,” he said.
Under cross-examination by Deputy Chief Assistant District Attorney Candice Branche Hill said he used drugs while in jail. He also said he never asked that the interview be stopped.
Judge Johnson said he would make a ruling on the motion after reviewing a video and transcript of the interview. Hill is expected to be back in court early next year when both sides are expected to announce ready for trial. He is currently housed at Smith State Prison after his probation for a previous conviction was revoked.